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Movie Review: The Snowman

Worst Hollywood Flop Of 2012

We've talked about a lot of high-profile flops this year, some that made us sad and some that just made us laugh. But none of them came close to the spectacularly low box-office numbers of this horror flick, which earned less than $300 (no, that's not a typo) in its box-office run.

Playback is a small horror flick (with a budget estimated at only about $7.5 million) about an evil force that's able to possess its victims through video playback (sound familiar, Ring fans?) and threatens to reveal dark secrets in a Michigan town. It starred Christian Slater and co-starred the likes of Caprica's Alessandra Torresani. Despite a couple of semi-big names, the film grossed only $264 theatrically. Yes, you're still reading that right. No zeroes after that. Just three figures.

So why'd the flick tank so badly? Well, some of it has to do with a very limited box-office run. The film was only available in a single U.S. theater, for one week, and after earning $252 on openin…

New Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters Trailer

Jeremy Renner trades in arrows for a shotgun in Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters, where the Avengers actor and former Bond girl Gemma Arterton star as the famous title characters. They appear in a new trailer, which proves this isn't your grandma's version of the fairy tale.

Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters is a graphic adaptation that takes place 15 years after the siblings' kidnapping. After fighting off their evil captor, they developed "a taste for witch blood." They want to rid the world of the creatures, one kill at a time.

The duo lend their expertise to a village, which becomes ravaged by the supernatural. Among them is the witch (played by X-Men's Famke Janssen) that tried to kill them years ago. But Hansel and Gretel have revenge on the brain. They're sure to leave blood and guts in their wake as they try to defeat her once and for all.

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Top 15 Films Of 2012. That's Right 15

In a year that saw some of the worst films ever, 2012 also brought us some of the most memorable. But how do you reduce a list from 65 to just 10 - you add five more! Yes, SJF brought you an amazing 65 reviews in 2012 - how do I still have eyes after seeing that many? In short, there were so many good films that a top 10 just felt too small.

I know that some of you might not agree with what you're about to see, but that's the great thing about 'best-of' lists: they should generate discussion and thoughtful consideration, while ultimately encouraging you to either catch a hidden gem for the first time, or to relive the moment when one became a favorite.

We've been building this list all year, with some films receiving a last-minute bump or demotion based on their release date or a recent revisiting. To be clear, we include films that probably won't even be nominated for an Oscar, either because of their subject matter or their poor performance at theaters.…

First 4 Minutes From Warm Bodies

Thanks to Fandango we have the first 4 minutes for the upcoming film Warm Bodies.

Warm Bodies, directed by 50/50’s Jonathan Levine, finds zombie R (Nicholas Hoult) un-living in a world where the undead outnumber the living. He and his rotting contemporaries regularly raid the fugitive pockets of human survivors, lured by their warm, fleshy delights and focused on eating their brains.

But on one of the scouting missions, R meets and engages with Julie (Teresa Palmer) and something unusual happens: R starts to feel something. Could it be that his lingering humanity is starting to return as he tentatively tries to woo this woman? And what will the rest of his zombie brethren think, including best friend M (Rob Corddry)?

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Dead Man Down Trailer Starring Rapace & Farrell

Since they worked together on the original version of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, star Noomi Rapace has seen her career spark in Hollywood, while director Niels Arden Oplev has mostly worked on TV projects and developing other movies. Now they’ve reunited – and pulled in Colin Farrell and Terrence Howard – for revenge thriller Dead Man Down, which has just put its first trailer online.

Farrell plays Victor, the right hand man to an underground New York crime lord (Howard). When he’s spotted killing on the job by Rapace’s damaged Beatrice, she reaches out to him.

See, she’s been the victim of one of Howard’s actions and she’s burning with vengeance. So she blackmails Victor (who has his own reasons to be angry with Howard) and has him start to take down his boss’s operations. Which naturally leads to more trouble than either of them expect…

The trailer, which also gives us a glimpse of co-star Dominic Cooper in a action, runs a little long and gives a lot away, but it certainly a…

Win Tickets to An Advance Screening For NOT FADE AWAY In Sacramento

Win your tickets to see an advance screening for NOT FADE AWAY! The screening is on Wednesday, January 2nd @ 7:00PM at Century Greenback In Sacramento.


NOT FADE AWAY, the widely anticipated feature film debut from The Sopranos creator David Chase is an ode to the transformative power of rock ‘n’ roll. In 1964, the Rolling Stones appear on television and three best friends from the suburbs of New Jersey decide to form a rock band. The film stars John Magaro, Jack Huston, Will Brill, Bella Heathcote, Brad Garrett, Christopher McDonald and James Gandolfini.


The film’s forthcoming soundtrack on ABKCO Records chronicles the sounds that inspired a generation to pursue dreams of rock stardom and glory. The soundtrack, set for digital release on December 18th, will be available at iTunes and all other digital download stores. Not Fade Away, a Paramount Vantage film, opens in select theaters on December 21st, 2012.


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Make sure toLIKESandwichJohnFilms on Facebook and why not…

Tarantino Talks Killer Crow

With his latest, slave-turned-bounty hunter vengeance quest Django Unchained, in American cinemas over Christmas, Quentin Tarantino has naturally been busy on the promotional trail. Talking about the film, he’s revealed that his previous release, Inglourious Basterds, may spawn what could become the third part of a trilogy featuring some unused script material.

Tarantino has talked in the past about having lots of material leftover when he converted the long-gestating passion project between a briefly planned miniseries version into the cinematic incarnation that finally reached cinemas.

Now he says he’s considering a third revisionist history film to stand alongside Django and the Basterds, this time spotlighting characters originally intended to feature in stories running alongside those of Brad Pitt’s Lt. Aldo Raines and his squad.

"My original idea for Inglourious Basterds way back when was that this would be a huge story that included the smaller story that you saw in the f…

The Most Disappointing Movies Of 2012

This year – perhaps more than any other in film history – has given us some of the best and most disappointing/terrible films of all time. Perhaps it's the media machine that seems to make every movie look like the second coming of Jesus, or Moses, or William Shatner. Those lofty expectations certainly held up with The Avengers; but there were also a healthy share of films that left us unfulfilled, like my oft-used prom queen analogy, who fails to put out after a night of courting and outright begging for something magical to occur.

Maybe you liked Prometheus even after a preview that looked so amazing. That's fair. No matter where you stand, here's SJF's most disappointing releases – because we love to rub Hollywood's screw ups in their faces.

Just so we're clear, the word 'disappointing' refers to: Films that were highly anticipated, either for their casting/director or because the previews suggested a much better film than we actually got, eithe…

J.J. Abrams Turned Down Star Wars

Lifelong Star Wars fan J.J. Abrams will remain just that.

Colin Trevorrow Tiptoes Around 'Star Wars' Speculation, Looks to the Future The writer-director-producer, who has pumped blood into the second iteration of the Mission: Impossible series and fully revived Star Trek for the big screen, told Empire magazine that while he met with new series producer Kathleen Kennedy about involvement in Star Wars: Episode VII, he decided against hopping aboard.

"There were the very early conversations, and I quickly said that, because of my loyalty to Star Trek and also just being a fan, I wouldn't even want to be involved in the next version of those things," he told the magazine. "I declined any involvement very early on. I'd rather be in the audience not knowing what was coming, rather than being involved in the minutiae of making them."
Abrams has said that while he grew up as a major Star Wars fan, he was not particularly in love with Star Trek, which made…

CIRQUE DU SOLEIL Review. Circus On Crack

CIRQUE DU SOLEIL: WORLDS AWAY 3D Review By: RAMA
Rama comes in with another review.


CIRQUE DU SOLEIL: WORLDS AWAY 3D is like Circus on crack. What a spellbinding visual splendor of a joyride! You won’t believe your eyes! You’re going to be bombarded with so many colors, stunning stage spectacles, creative transitions and clever choreographies, that you may get brain freeze by the time this film or should I say attraction, ends…

A young woman is entranced by an Aerialist. When they fall into the dreamlike world of Cirque du Soleil and are separated, they travel through the different tent worlds trying to find each other.


When I first saw footage and clips of this film, months ago, I thought it was just another effort by 3D preacher James Cameron to try and jam 3D down our throats again, but I was willing to give it a shot, because I’ve always been a big fan of Cirque Du Soleil, although the only show of theirs I’ve ever watched was Zumanity in Las Vegas. But these guys are extraordinary at…

Trailer For Eli Roth's Aftershock

Here is the first trailer for Aftershock, which boasts Roth starring, co-writing and producing (but leaving the director’s chair to co-writer Nicolas Lopez) finds the Hostel man as a bloke looking for some fun in Chile.

The traveler is introduced to a cool underground nightclub where the booze flows, the music plays and the ceiling suddenly collapses. That last part isn’t actually one of the club’s selling points, as a deadly earthquake has hit the place.

And that’s the least of the problems – when our hero and his surviving friends make it out of the subterranean death trap, they discover that the local prison was damaged by the trembler and the prisoners have taken their chance to go full Andy Dufresne. Except instead of making for a beach on the coast of Zihuatanejo, the cons are roving the streets killing people.

Who will survive? And what will be left of them? Only the film can answer that. Roth’s co-stars include Selena Gomez, Ariel Levy, Andrea Osvart and Lorenza Izzo.

Please …

Sharlto Copley As Kruger From Elysium

First look at  Sharlto Copley in Neill ‘District 9’ Blomkamp's upcoming dystopian epic ElysiumCopley will be playing the film’s villain Kruger.

Elysium is set in the year 2159, and pits the oppressed people of the ruined planet Earth against the privileged elite aboard the Elysium space station. Matt Damon is ex-convict man-on-a-mission Max, fighting with the Terrans for equality, and Jodie Foster is the dastardly government official intent on enforcing anti-immigration laws and keeping Elysium for the Elysians; Kruger is her relentless attack dog.

Reports over the summer seemed to suggest that Copley, who of course starred for Blomkamp in District 9, had one eye on Heath Ledger's Joker for the role of the black-ops military nutbag, but Copley tells Empire this was a misunderstanding. "The Joker was a mistaken reference," he says. "I was really just saying that that was the last time I saw a villain that inspired me: somebody that set the bar. There’s no con…

Parental Guidance Review. The Film Is A Victim Of The Times

Parental Guidance Review By: MattInRC
The inoffensive but bland Parental Guidance is a nice throwback for families. And that's the problem.


There was a time when nice live-action family comedies ruled the movie theaters. Forget about well-made, Oscar nominated-fare - we're talking about films you could sit your kids in front of for a good laugh while still appealing to mom and dad with hidden sexual innuendos. Parenthood, Father of the Bride, Christmas Vacation, and Home Alone became instant classics that extended the careers of Steve Martin, Chevy Chase, and other mid-aged actors desperately looking for paychecks. Today, many of these films feel antiquated and down-right tedious with their gags falling flat and the cuteness factor reminding us of cheesy schmaltz. I'm not sure what has caused us to look so negatively at these used-to-be classics, but they've certainly not held up. Parental Guidance finds itself a potential victim of the times in which we live, an …

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR Coming To Sacramento January 3rd to 6th

DREAMWORKS’ HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGONLIVE SPECTACULAR TICKETS TO SACRAMENTO STOP DATES ON SALE NOW!

Visit www.dreamworksdragonslive.com to purchase tickets.


Following critically acclaimed engagements in Australia, New Zealand, and the United States,  DREAMWORKS’ HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR continues to wow audiences across the US, setting a new standard for live entertainment. Here’s what critic Michael Grossberg of the Columbus Dispatch wrote about the show, which just played the Schottenstein Center this past weekend:


“Leavened with comedy and consistent thrills, the two-act production expertly adapts the popular 2010 3D DreamWorks Animation film based on the 2003 book. In some ways, the more dramatic fight, flight and chase sequences seem even more effective onstage because of the nearly seamless way the creative team blends the live action with giant cinematic projections on a large rear screen and larger football-field floor.” “Impressive effects and epic staging en…